08 Feb 2023 | Amateur golf |
Golf Australia makes HP changes
by Australian Golf Media
Golf Australia has announced a raft of changes to its High Performance program. The most significant of these is the elevation of renowned PGA Professional Tony Meyer from Senior Manager-High Performance Queensland to a new role as national High Performance Director. Meyer, a confidant of Cameron Smith from his years in the Queensland Academy of Sport system, has already started his new role. He will work closely with Golf Australia’s General Manager-High Performance, Brad James, in continuing to build a competition and training environment that value-adds to the coaching and service teams that are already in place, and which has produced a cluster of world class players in recent years. The likes of Open Champion Cameron Smith, US Women’s Open champion Minjee Lee, another major champion in Hannah Green, DP World Tour star Min Woo Lee and multiple tour winner Lucas Herbert all graduated from High Performance programs at state and national level. Australia currently has seven men inside the top 100 in the Official World Golf Rankings headed by Smith at No. 4, and there are three women in the top 100 of the Rolex Rankings, topped by Lee at No. 3. Other changes include the welcome return to the Australian system of Matt Ballard from Singapore, and the move of Dean Kinney from his Victorian head coaching role to a national focus. Stacey Peters, already ensconced as Golf Australia's Female Pathway Manager, extends her role to cover High Performance in Tasmania. James said today: “We needed someone with the intimate, on-the-ground knowledge of the athletes and the state HP programs to be able to drive that long-term success that we want, and Tony Meyer is perfect in that role. “While working in partnership with each of the state HP managers, Tony is there to drive performance and accountability down through the programs and he’ll be at the coalface which is where we need him. “He’s had experience of working with Golf Australia for 12 years, he’s had more than 18 years of experience in the broader High-Performance industry. He’s got the knowledge of working with an athlete like Cam Smith, not to mention many other athletes who have transitioned to professional level, and that filters down via Tony to the state programs and the stakeholders and the service-providers. You just can’t replicate that experience and knowledge in any way.” Ballard grew up on the Gold Coast and played as a touring PGA Professional for 14 years before starting a career in coaching. Since 2019 he has been the national coach of Singapore. The national program also includes the Golf Australia Rookie Squad, a group of male and female players in the final six months of their amateur career, or the first five years as a professional. The squad has had some big successes and currently includes the likes of Jack Thompson, who won the Asian Tour Q-School recently, and LPGA Tour players Stephanie Kyriacou and Grace Kim. James said the High Performance programs would continue to be ambitious and challenging in the way that they operated. “We’re about value-adding to what’s already there in terms of coaching, conditioning, athlete-management, international and national tournament opportunities and sports psychology. We’re currently got a magnificent batch of great, young players at the top level of the game, but it’s our task to find the next generation and that’s what we’re all about.” Details of the changes: • High Performance Director – Tony Meyer Tony has started in his new role as Golf Australia High Performance Director and will continue to work closely with the General Manager – High Performance and the rest of the HP team nationally. A large part of this new role will be to work closely with each of the state HP programs and the service teams who deliver these programs while working in partnership with the state HP manager. • VIC High Performance Manager – Cameron Vincent Through an extensive interview process, Cameron Vincent has been offered and accepted a new role as Victorian High-Performance Manager. Cameron will transition to the Victorian role in February 2023, but will continue as Queensland High Performance Manager for the next few months to ensure there is an adequate change-over for the Queensland program and assist in transitioning the new QLD High Performance Manager • QLD High Performance Manager – Matt Ballard Matt is originally from Queensland and has been the Singapore National Coach for the past four years, and as a PGA Professional spent some time coaching Adam Scott. Prior to his coaching career he competed professionally throughout Asia and Australia. Matt will begin in his role on 1 February 2023. • TAS High Performance Manager – Stacey Peters Stacey will continue in her role as Female Pathway Manager but has now taken on the responsibility of leading the Tasmanian High-Performance program. As a player won the Spanish and French Opens in Europe, and the Vic Open at home. • Performance Manager – Dean Kinney PGA Professional Dean will move from his role as Vic Head Coach to Performance Manager in the new year which will focus on case managing and servicing athletes internationally. • Victorian Head Coach – Daniel Whyley PGA Professional Daniel Whyley has been imbedded in the Victorian High-Performance program for a number of years as the Assistant Coach. He will now step into the Head Coach role and oversee programming of the daily training environment for Victorian-based athletes out of the Australian Golf Centre.
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